Friday, December 18, 2009

Jodhpur, The Blue City

Jodhpur ahead
On NH 65 heading to Jodhpur

The Blue City

Jodhpur is known by many names: Sun City, Gateway to Thar and Brahmpuri are only some. Its most well-known moniker is The Blue City. Many of the houses to the north of Mehrangarh Fort are painted blue. The reason for the homes' color varies with the person you ask. Here are some of the reasons I have heard or read:

  • Brahmins are the religious leaders and skin of the gods is usually blue in color
  • The color discourages mosquitoes from entering the city
  • Chemicals to block termites tinted the originally white paint
  • This marked religious homes during the Jaipur-Jodhpur war, keeping inhabitants safe
  • Brahmins marked their homes to show themselves superior to neighbors
  • The color keeps the home cool

Whatever the reason, it was an interesting sight, looking down from Mehrangarh Fort.

The Blue City or the Sun City
View of The Blue City from Mehrangarh Fort

Mehrangarh Fort

Mehrangarh Fort
Architecture at Mehrangarh Fort

A rough English translation of mehrangarh is "sun fort"; fitting for a city known as Sun City. This fort was constructed in the fifteenth century and is one of India's largest.

Clock Tower Market

Clock Tower Market in Jodhpur
The market stays busy, regardless of the time of day

Nothing much to say here. Clock Tower Market is a market with a clock tower in the center. It was a chaotic place.

Johdpur market food
Market food

Fruit beer in the Jodhpur market
Fruit beer?

Umaid Bhawan Palace

Umaid Bhawan Palace
The Jodhpur royal family still resides at this 300+ room Taj hotel

We stopped for lunch at Umaid Bhawan Palace. There is a cover charge for entry to the grounds of Rs 3,000 each, but you get to deduct lunch from that amount. Or, as it turns out, your lunch will likely cost more than the cover charge. In other words, we had an expensive lunch at the palace. The grounds and lunch were nice, though.

Umaid Bhawan Palace gardens
Anjali catches up on phone calls

Great courtyard in Umaid Bhawan Palace
That would have been a great lunch spot

Kids at the Cattle Fair

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Asop, India, is between Jodhpur and Jaisalmer, if you get lost. We took a wrong turn somewhere and ended up going through this small town. The area was about to start a twenty-day cattle fair. We got out to stretch our legs and snap some photos, mostly of the local kids. Local is probably not accurate though, since many people travel from other regions for this event.

Kids sampling sweets
Kids eating sweets in Asop

Kids at the Ashop Cattle Fair
Great photo Anjali took of some kids

Preparing chai
Making chai

We were soon on our way again, after finding the right road to take. Next stop, Jaisalmer.

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